Unbirthday, or: Cheers, mate!

An American sentence:

I hereby bestow this sentence upon you. What shall you do with it?


What’s an ‘American Sentence’?

Allen Ginsberg, inventor of the American Sentence, felt that the haiku didn’t work as well in English. Ginsberg decided to remove the line structure of the haiku, maintaining the requirement of 17 syllables total. He felt that removing the line count freed the American Sentence up for the idiosyncrasies of English phonemes.

The requirements:

  1. Composed in one line;
  2. Syllabic, 17 syllables;
  3. Condensed, written with no unnecessary words or articles;
  4. Complete sentence or sentences;
  5. Includes a turn or enlightenment.

Let’s write poetry together!

When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.

Ben Harper (b. 1969)

Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!

23 thoughts on “Unbirthday, or: Cheers, mate!”

  1. hi David, btw is there a way to find out which posts have been visited from which country? or more specifically, is it possible to see which post a singular visit(or) in this case from Germany, went to see? Thanks,

      1. No particular reason. Maybe Tagalog would be as appropriate? Really there’s just too many sentences to file permanently in the cranium so I have to let some go. Yours was on the top of the cue this morning and that was my first reply using an American Sentence. β€œI woke up too early” was not enough syllables. 😁

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